The way we work has changed, and continues to change at a rapid pace.
As a result, more and more teams are having to take on change management projects. Whether that be a strategic shift in direction, a technological breakthrough, or an expansion through a merger or acquisition, organisations need to embrace change to remain competitive and thrive.
Sadly, the path to successful change implementation is often fraught with challenges, particularly when it comes to the employee experience.
A study by Prosci, a leading change management consultancy, revealed that a staggering 70% of organisational change initiatives fail, with poor communication cited as the primary culprit.
This communication breakdown leads to a cascade of negative consequences, including employee disengagement, resistance to change, and ultimately, the derailment of the entire change initiative.
Case Study: The anatomy of a successful merger and office move
Let’s take a ‘simple’ office move as an example.
Mergers and acquisitions often necessitate office moves, a logistical undertaking that can significantly impact employee experience.
The disruption to routines, the potential for job relocations, and the uncertainty about the future can create a sense of upheaval and anxiety among employees.
A successful office move as a result of a merger or acquisition requires a comprehensive change management plan that addresses all aspects of the transition, from communication and training to logistics and support.
Here’s a breakdown of some of the components invovled:
Clear and consistent communication
Open, transparent and relevant communication channels are needed to keep employees informed throughout the entire process. Regular, yet relevant updates that address the specific concerns of individuals, with clear timelines will help to minimise uncertainty and foster trust.
Employee involvement and feedback
Engaging employees in the planning process, no matter where they are, will help smooth the transition. Seek their input on workspace design, technology needs, and any potential challenges. Actively soliciting feedback throughout the transition helps teams to identify and address concerns promptly.
Change management training
Whilst you may have a team dedicated to project managing the move, it’s still important that managers and team leaders are provided relevant training on how to effectively communicate the change, address employee concerns, and navigate the move smoothly. They need to be equipped with the skills and information to support employees through that upheaval.
Logistics and support
By streamlining the logistics of an office move, you can ensure a smooth transition with minimal disruption to daily operations, so you’ll need to provide support for packing, moving and setting up new workspaces.
Seamless integration is needed of technology systems between the merging companies to minimise downtime and maintain productivity. An system audit as well as providing training on new systems and tools will help to smooth that transition.
It’s also crucial that the company fosters a sense of unity and belonging by creating opportunities for employees from both companies to interact, collaborate, and build relationships. Promoting cross-company cultural activities and events also help to break down silos help to foster a share identity.
The important role of an EXP in Change Management
There are many components involved in mergers and office moves as outlined above, and whilst the project team might have thought about everything they need to do, if they don’t have the right tools, it can start to get messy.
That’s where an Employee Experience Platform (EXP) like HulerHub comes in.
EXPs can play a pivotal role in enhancing communication, connecting remote teams, and streamlining the change management process. These platforms offer a centralised hub for sharing information, soliciting feedback, and providing support throughout the entire transition.
Here’s just some of ways an EXP can support your change programme:
EXPs provide a centralized platform for you to disseminate consistent and timely updates to your entire workforce, ensuring employees stay on the same page without bombarding them with notifications through several communication channels.
EXPs allow for audience-managed communication. This means that you can tailor and target messages to specific employee segments based on their location, role, or department. This ensures that information is relevant and actionable (and we all know a one-size-fits-all-approach doesn’t work).
EXPs provide a consistent channel for employees to share feedback and raise concerns, allowing HR teams to identify and address issues promptly.
The reporting functions also allow them to understand which functions or individuals are engaging with different content and when, which help to shape when communications are shared with who, or when a prompt might be needed to line managers to share resources with their wider team.
Connecting your new teams before the move is crucial for improving time-to-productivity and creating a sense of community early on.
EXPs are a great way to do this because they are designed to connect remote teams and departmernts across different locations.
They do this by aiding communication and collaboration early on, including things like recognition tools, forums, employee profiles, content collections for Employee Resource Groups to promote diversity and inclusion and more.
It’s also a great way your organisation’s new mission, values and goals. Helping employees feel like they are part of something bigger and that they are making a difference.
EXPs are a great way to centralise resources related to your change management project that’s accessible to all your employees, from any device or location.
HulerHub, for example, has a intuitive Collection feature which could be used to create audience-managed resource collections such as:
- Learning development resources to train managers and team leaders, and collections for them to share with their teams
- A resource collection for suppliers to support office moves
- User adoption resources for new software
- A collection of new policies and procedures that are audience-specific such as for your customer contact teams, or engineering teams
- Team profiles to get to know your new team members including information on preferred ways of working
- Project communications, such as why the change is happening, the impact, timelines for key milestones and FAQs.
By organising, collating and sharing content in this way you can ensure optimal engagement and reduced frustration.
What’s more, you can track analytics to get a better understanding of the types of content teams are engaging with, including format type to optimise your communications and identify where additional intervention might be needed.
Technology audit and integration
As we covered above, a merger often results in taking on new technologies, policies, processes and more. An EXP is a great way to centralise all of your tools etc to audit which teams are using what and ultimately streamline your tech stack.
Once you’ve done this, you can integrate with your chosen tools so that employees have easy access to their new software and you can create resource collections that support training and adoption of your new technologies.
Change management is hard, but EXPs make life easier for you and your employees
There’s no denying that change management is hard, but there are tools that can significantly simplify and improve the process for both you and your employees.
By levering EXPs, organisations can enhance communication, connect remote teams, and provide employees with the support they need to navigate change effectively, ultimately leading to a smoother and more successful change management journey.
If you’re currently managing and change programme, why not speak to one of our experts to find out how we can support today.